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Abstract

Antibiotic pigment from desert soil actinomycetes; biological activity, purification and chemical screening

Author(s): L Selvameenal1, M Radhakrishnan1, R Balagurunathan2
1 Department of Microbiology, Sri Sankara Arts and Science College, Kanchipuram-631 561, India 2 Department of Microbiology, Periyar University, Salem-636 011, India

Correspondence Address:
R Balagurunathan Department of Microbiology, Periyar University, Salem-636 011 India [email protected]


An actinomycete strain, Streptomyces hygroscopicus subsp. ossamyceticus (strain D10) was isolated from Thar Desert soil, Rajasthan during the year 2006 and found to produce a yellow color pigment with antibiotic activity. Crude pigment was produced from strain D10 by solid state fermentation using wheat bran medium followed by extraction with ethyl acetate. The antimicrobial activity of the crude pigment was evaluated against drug resistant pathogens such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, extended spectrum b-lactamase producing cultures of Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Klebsiella sp. About 420 mg of crude pigment was produced per 10 g of wheat bran medium. In the disc diffusion method the crude ethyl acetate extract showed a minimum of 10 mm inhibition against Klebsiella sp. and maximum of 19 mm of inhibition against Escherichia coli. The crude pigment was partially purified using thin layer chromatography with the solvent system chloroform:methanol (30:70) and the Rf value was calculated as 0.768. Antimicrobial activity of the partially purified compound from thin layer chromatography was determined using the bioautography method. The purified pigment showed minimum of 15 mm inhibition against Klebsiella sp. and a maximum of 23 mm of inhibition against vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus in the disc diffusion method. Based on the results of chemical screening, the pigment was tentatively identified as group of sugar containing molecules.

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